Thursday, December 13, 2012

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A Revolutionary Constitution

James Madison...Egyptian style
In all of the endless bickering regarding the proposed new constitution for Egypt, there has been scant detail on how the existing draft can be improved.  Though there have been a few exceptions to the banal debates -- such as the ever-so-intelligent idea of setting specific maximum wages (in contrast to those failed world economies that only have minimum wages established by their legislatures), capping land ownership to five feddans (because the existing 50 feddan limits have been so successful in creating a vibrant agricultural sector) and ensuring universal healthcare that extends not just to the poor, but to all Egyptians (because Egyptians with means really want to have access to pristine state-run hospitals) -- such modest proposals really have not captured the imagination.

Egyptians pride themselves in being unique, and all the more so in a post-January 25 era.  In the interest of jump-starting discussions on a founding document befitting of its people in these exciting times, here are some specific proposals for Egypt's Revolutionary Constitution:

Thursday, December 6, 2012

In Defense of America

"S" is for Salafi!
Of the many idiotic explanations for the mess transpiring these days in Egypt, one of the most incongruous is that this is all America's fault. U.S. policy toward Egypt under Obama has been far from perfect, especially in too eagerly accommodating, and hence legitimizing, the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood. But to assign all, most or even any significant part the chaos of the last twenty-three months to the United States, amounts to little more than a limp attempt to shift the blame for Egypt's demise since January 25. From the outset, and unfortunately still continuing, the self-proclaimed revolutionary vanguard that triggered the events leading to the present has been lacking in vision, leadership, organization, responsibility, accountability, and credibility, even if being full of energy and passion. The ensuring takeover by the Islamists was as much a victory by default as it was anything else.